Tag Archives: medications

Could There be a Medical Cause Behind a Suffering Libido?

In our stressful, fast-paced world, it is no surprise that many people experience a sex-drive drought every now and then. While most cases of suffering libidos are psychological or emotional by nature, sometimes there is a more medical cause. Let’s take a look at some of the potential conditions or medical situations that could cause the unfortunate side effect of a de-railed sex drive:

  1. Fatigue – Whether you are suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome or any other type of fatigue, feeling physically and emotionally drained will almost always negatively affect sexual function and drive.
  2. Type 2 diabetes – Poorly controlled type 2 diabetes can cause both men and women to experience lower libidos as well as impaired sexual function (such as erectile dysfunction in men). Research suggests that people with type 2 diabetes are more likely to experience decreased interest in sex than those without the disease. This may be because of the complicated nature of the disease, comorbid depression, low energy levels as well as medications that can interfere with sexual function.
  3. Sleep or sensorimotor problems – People who have insomnia or sensorimotor conditions like restless leg syndrome that interfere with a good night’s sleep may be too tired much of the time and therefor, generally less interested in pursuing sex than those who regularly sleep well.
  4. Chronic pain – It is hard to be ‘in the mood’ when you experience daily pain. Those with arthritis or other conditions that cause them to be in pain much of the time often experience issues with sexual drive or function because of their near-constant discomfort. If you are always in pain and it is interfering with areas of your life such as sleep or sexual functioning, talk to your doctor (or one of ours!) soon about pain management options.
  5. Menopause – Hormonal imbalances or changes such as those experienced during menopause may cause a woman to have a lower (or higher) sex drive either temporarily, or long term. If you are experiencing changes in your libido because of menopause, talk to your doctor about any medical options such as medications that may help you.
  6. Lifestyle – If you are a moderate or heavy drinker or smoker, you may find yourself unable to, or uninterested in engaging in sexual activity.
  7. Autoimmune diseases can sometimes cause random inflammation all over the body as well as physical problems with the genitals such as vaginal constriction. These problems may lead to a reduced sex drive.
  8. Medications – Many medications such as antidepressants or corticosteroids may adversely affect your sex drive or ability to perform sexual activity.
  9. Dyspareunia – Women who experience pain during sex (dyspareunia) will likely have lower sex drives until the problem is rectified. Certain conditions or anatomical abnormalities may cause pain during intercourse.
  10. Post-surgery – Having to get surgery (especially on the genitals or breasts) often hamper a person’s sex drive, sometimes for long after the surgery is healed.
  11. Heart disease – People with heart conditions may be afraid to engage in sex (or advised not to do so) until their condition is better controlled. High blood pressure medications can cause a lowered libido or sexual dysfunction as they decrease the force of blood flow to the lower part of the body.

There you have some of the potential medical causes of a low libido. Thanks for visiting DocChat! We hope you return again soon.







Medication Safety Tips (Part 2)


According to the CDC, each year there are hundreds of thousands of ER visits due to medication complications and mishaps. Most of these incidents could have been prevented with the proper medication care. We looked at our first 5 medication safety tips in our last post, now for the next few:

6. Always check the ingredients. Aside from checking for potential allergenic filler ingredients, you should also know how much of the active ingredient is in each medication you’re taking as it is easier to overdose on OTC medications than you may think. For example, acetaminophen (the active ingredient in Tylenol) is camouflaged in many OTC and prescription medications such as decongestants and cold medicine. In fact, over 600 North American medications contain acetaminophen! So if you are taking the maximum dose of extra strength Tylenol for aches and pains, along with another acetaminophen-containing medication you may be risking serious problems.

7. Practice caffeine caution. Some medications don’t react well with caffeine, so be sure not to chase them with a large iced tea or coffee unless the pharmacist says it is okay.

8. Make sure all medications are inaccessible to children and pets. Even 1 pill or supplement can harm a child, let alone if they happen to get into a whole bottle. Keep your medications tucked away on a high shelf or in a cabinet that can’t be accessed by little ones.

9. Use steroid creams sparingly. Unless it has been okayed by your doctor or pharmacist, be sure not to use topical steroid creams too heavily as they can potentially thin the skin (atrophy), especially in sensitive areas.

10. Know if it is safe to drink alcohol. Some medications can be dangerous when combined with alcohol.

11. Don’t discontinue medications before consulting your doctor or specialist. It isn’t a good idea to stop taking medications without first consulting your doctor, unless of course you are having an allergic reaction. In which case, seek emergency medical attention.

12. Rinse your mouth out after using puffers. Puffers can cause thrush (yeast infection) of the mouth if you do not rinse the medication out of your mouth after use. Some other medications may have similar instructions to follow, so be sure to check the label every time.

Well there you have the rest of our medication do’s and don’ts! Click here for more information about how to correctly take different medications. Thanks for visiting DocChat! Remember, our board certified physicians are on standby 24/7/365 if you have any medical or medication related inquiries.


Medication Safety Tips (Part 1)

Modern medications are responsible for vastly improving healthcare and life longevity, however, they are certainly far from risk free. When used correctly and appropriately, medications can save lives and better thousands of health conditions, but there is always the potential for toxicity due to accidental misuse or overdose, drug interactions or unsafe use of certain medications (such as while pregnant). The CDC reports over 700,000 medication-related ER visits annually in the United States. Many medication mishaps are preventable by following these key safety steps:

  1. Pay close attention to the directions as well as your pharmacist’s tips. It is estimated that between 20-50% of patients don’t take their medications properly, resulting in potentially fatal mix-ups. For example, some medications are only to be taken once weekly and taking them daily could be dangerous. It is extremely important to ensure you know the correct directions and dosage of each of your medications. Do not crush or alter the medication in any way unless it says so on the container.
  2. Make a list and check it twice! If you can’t name all your drugs and dosages, you should keep a list handy in your wallet or purse of all your medications and prescribed dosages to show a new pharmacist, doctor, nurse or in case of emergency.
  3. Think before reaching for OTC medications. Though many people don’t take OTC medications as seriously as they do prescription pills, OTC drugs also carry significant risks if misused such as internal bleeding or liver damage. There are many that can interact with prescribed medications, worsen pre-existing conditions such as heart disease, or conflict with other commonly used OTC medications.
  4. Treat Supplements like medications. Most people think supplements are “no biggy”, but they can actually be pretty dangerous when taken incorrectly or with the wrong medications or medical conditions. Some supplements can even render your medication ineffective. It is also important to tell your doctor about any supplements you are taking or wish to take.
  5. Keep an eye on any new side effects. You don’t need to be alarmed or too worried about listed side effects of medications as most of them are quite rare. However, it is a good idea to keep an eye on any changes you notice since taking the new medication and let your doctor or pharmacist know at your next appointment. If the side effects are serious, seek emergency treatment right away.

Well there you have the first few of our medication do’s and don’ts. Keep an eye out for Part 2 next.  Thanks for visiting DocChat! Remember, our board-certified physicians are on standby 24/7/365 if you have any medical or medication related inquiries.



Heart Matters – OTC Meds That Can Exacerbate Heart Problems

If you’ve been diagnosed with hypertension (high blood pressure) or a type of cardiovascular disease, you have to live strategically to ensure a long and healthy life. That means making changes such as avoiding certain foods, getting more exercise, limiting drinking and smoking, but the caution doesn’t end there. Certain OTC medications and supplements can dangerously exasperate existing heart problems by raising blood pressure or causing interactions with heart medications, and the results could be deadly. Some medications to watch out for include:

  1. Phenylephrine-containing medications – such as certain allergy medications or hemorrhoid creams shrink blood vessels, thereby interfering with heart or stroke medications.
  2. NSAIDs – such as naproxen, ibuprofen or toradol can significantly increase blood pressure, putting you at a higher risk of having a heart attack or stroke.
  3. Decongestants – can both raise blood pressure and decrease the effectiveness of heart medications, largely because they may contain a mixture of NSAIDs and pseudoephedrine. Talk to your doctor before trying sinus or cold and flu decongestants.
  4. Migraine medications – bring pain down by constricting blood vessels in your head, which could contribute to the risk of heart attack or stroke.
  5. Some antibiotics – research illustrates that macrolide antibiotics such as azithromycin can actually change the electrical impulses of the heart, causing rapid heart rate or even an arrhythmia. Be sure to ask your doctor what kind of antibiotic would be better for your condition if you have an infection and also take heart medications.


If you have a heart condition (especially if you take heart medications) you should be extremely careful with vitamins and dietary supplements as they are not closely regulated by the FDA like medications are. Many can interfere with how well your medication will work or may worsen a heart condition. While there a few that have proven to be beneficial to the heart such as fish oil (though it is better to obtain it naturally through a diet rich in fatty fish and nuts), many supplements can cause serious problems. Some of the worst offenders that can speed up blood pressure or interact with medications are:

  • Weight loss supplements
  • John’s Wort
  • Garlic
  • Glucosamine
  • Ginseng
  • Evening primrose oil
  • Danshen
  • Dong quai

This isn’t a comprehensive list, so be sure to talk to your doctor and pharmacist before trying any OTC medications or supplements as you never know the damage they may do to an already weak heart. Thanks for visiting DocChat! If you have any health concerns, our excellent board certified doctors are standing by 24/7/365.